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Samsung's Galaxy Fold 2 could get a clamshell-style square design

(Image credit: TechRadar)

When the Samsung Galaxy Fold landed in the hands of reviewers earlier this year, those testers quickly spotted and reported on a range of reliability issues and kinks, and the result was that the official launch got a last-minute delay. That pause has now stretched to more than five months, with a final retail release date still yet to be confirmed.

Despite this, we’re already starting to hear whispers about a potential Fold successor, with a series of earlier patents potentially uncovering the design of a future Samsung foldable device, and a new a report today from Bloomberg that seems to confirm one of these designs.

(Image credit: Samsung / LetsGoDigital)

Specifically, the report claims that the next foldable Galaxy device from Samsung (tentatively titled the Samsung Galaxy Fold 2) will fold in half vertically rather than horizontally, with a 6.7-inch display protected on the interior (clamshell-style), leaving a square device that’s half the size and considerably more pocketable.

The Bloomberg article lends more weight to the recently-discovered patent (shown above) that depicts a crease running horizontally across the device, and an external display on half of the exterior – when folded clamshell-style, the other half would be home to the primary camera array. 

While the handset in this patent wouldn’t strictly resemble a square when folded, the external display itself is much closer to a 1-to-1 aspect ratio than typical smartphone displays.

A particularly techy pocket square

Other details that Bloomberg has garnered from “people familiar with the product’s development” include an early-2020 announcement that will depend largely on the performance of the first Galaxy Fold.

The report also mentions that Samsung is aiming to make the Galaxy Fold 2 thinner and more affordable than its predecessor. It will also apparently feature a hole-punch selfie camera (akin to the existing Galaxy Note 10 range) and a dual-camera rear display (which is somewhat at odds with the aforementioned patent).

While there's no doubt that cutting-edge tech like this is generally considered to be a premium item, Bloomberg claims that the Fold 2 is being made in collaboration with American clothing designer Thom Browne and is aimed at those "more interested in fashion, status, and luxury than a device's tech specs".

Of the existing and upcoming foldable smartphone designs, this vertical clamshell approach comes close to only one currently-rumored design – the Motorola Razr V4, which is purported to be a foldable reboot of the iconic clamshell that kicked things off in 2004. 

None of the Galaxy Fold 2 details are concrete at this point of course – in fact, it’s possible we’re seeing details on multiple handsets – and we’re unlikely to get any official confirmation on the Fold’s successor until the original unit at least hits the market.